By Jan Schultz
The Imperial Republican
After several weeks of discussion and a full three readings of ordinances, Imperial’s council members and mayor will start collecting salaries.
After a couple of slight changes along the way, the 3-0 vote on both ordinances Monday set the salaries for the council at $2,000 each per year and $5,200 for the mayor.
Council members will be paid in quarterly installments with the first coming in March 2015.
It’s not the first time members of the Imperial city council and mayor have been paid.
In 2010, the council voted to eliminate pay for those office-holders. At that time, council members were receiving $60 per meeting, while the mayor received an annual salary of $3,000.
Council members at that time received a deduction in salaries if they missed a meeting. That condition was not part of the new ordinances passed Monday.
In other business at the meeting, the council heard a presentation from the three fourth graders whose essays on trees won them a trip to Lincoln as the city’s Tree City USA representatives.
More on their report and their essays can be found on page B5.
Light dam land lease
Scott Clements was the only bidder for the city-owned section of ground, southwest of Imperial, known as the light dam section.
Monday’s council meeting served as the official two-year lease auction for the property.
Clements, who lives next to the section and has had the lease the past 14 years, offered $8,800 per year for the lease.
That’s a big drop from the cost the past two years when Clements paid $15,500 per year. There was a second bidder two years ago, however, bidding by phone from Oxford.
That $15,500 lease was the highest the city had ever received, according to discussion after the 2012 bidding.
The current lease runs out the end of April and will continue through April 2016.
The lease agreement is the same as previous years regarding each party’s responsibilities. It is estimated about 500 acres are available for grazing.
Clements, as lease-holder, maintains the fencing and also applies chemicals for weed control. The city provides the chemicals and fencing materials.
According to the agreement, the section of land remains open to the public.
Approval of Clements’ $8,800 bid was approved on a 3-0 council vote.
Public works equipment
Council members approved the low bid from Yost Farm Supply in Imperial for a Grasshopper 930D mower to be used in the parks department.
Yost’s bid was $13,490 which includes a trade-in of an older model. Also bidding was 21st Century Equipment at $19,573, but their bid did not include a trade.
Supt. Pat Davison said he budgeted for the mower purchase this year.
The city will continue to advertise its used bucket truck for sale. Davison said he’s had at least one individual look at the truck but a formal bid did not follow.
Advertisements will continue in two statewide municipal publications. There originally had been a minimum bid of $15,000 on the truck, but that has since been removed.
Sage Addition payment
Approval of a $318,591.63 invoice from Werner Construction was approved 3-0, which about takes care of the city’s payments for the street work there last year.
About $14,000 plus the city’s retainage remain to be paid once the project is completely finished. The company is completing seeding in areas this month, Davison said.
Clerk Leyland said since Werner’s invoices were slow in being submitted, it has delayed the dollar amount to be listed on the engineer’s Certificate of Completion, which is needed for the bonds to be issued. In the meantime, the city purchased temporary bonds through local banks to pay the bills as they were submitted.
Property owners in the addition cannot be assessed for the work until all of the payments to Werner are finalized, and total costs are determined.
Two mayoral appointments to city boards were approved by the council, both involving youth members.
Alyssa Moreno, a CCS sophomore, was appointed to the park board, while Charlie Ann Carter, also a sophomore, was named to the library board.
City Clerk/Administrator Jo Leyland noted, as youth members, the pair do have full voting rights as other members of the board do.
The council also approved a resolution naming Supt Davison as the city’s designated representative on the Municipal Energy Agency of Nebraska (MEAN) board, a position he has held in the past.
Council member Chad Yaw serves as alternate.